Selecting your wedding photographer might be up there with one of the most important decisions you’ll make (you’ll be looking at your wedding photos for years to come!) That’s why RedSphere Studios recently teamed up with locally-focused online wedding resource Borrowed and Blue, so that couples can get to know us and our photography services a little better.
Here’s our Q&A with Borrowed & Blue:
1. How did you first get into photography?
My interest in photography first began when I went out on an assignment with a photo-journalist friend of mine and saw just how challenging it was to capture the real emotions and feelings of her subjects, but how exciting it was at the same time. I went out and bought a camera and a few other pieces of equipment the following day and began shooting everything I could think of. I stared out with landscapes, but quickly transitioned into photographing people and learning to work with available light as well as shaping and creating my own. It wasn’t long before I was asked to shoot a wedding for a friend, which soon led to many other inquiries and many more stories to tell. What started out as curiosity grew into a passion and continues to be a source of my inspiration every single day. Ever since then, I never looked back.
2. What single photo sums up your aesthetic?
It would have to be the photo below from our photo-shoot in Hong Kong. I like photos that tell a story and capture the real emotion behind the shot while preserving the feel of the environment we were in at the same time. I feel like this photo does all of that and it wasn’t even anything we planned on taking at first. We were in a taxi going from one location to the next and decided to take a few shots of the couple since we had time to spare. What I love about this particular one is that it’s more than just a photo showing their feelings towards each other, it also allows the viewer to immerse themselves in the crazy and dynamic environment that is Hong Kong by adding a bit of depth to the shot. It will allow the couple to not only re-live the way they felt in that particular moment, but how it felt to be there as well and that is always something we try to communicate through our photographs.
3. As a storyteller, what draws you to a particular subject?
Every wedding and every subject is different. Finding out what makes each particular one special and unique is the challenge and is always one of the most important things we look for when photographing someone. Whether it’s the way they interact with their loved ones or the way they let loose on the dance floor at the end of the night, there is always a story to tell.
4. What is your favorite moment to photograph at a wedding?
It varies greatly from one wedding to the next, but I love photographing getting ready and dancing. Getting ready is usually a very special time for the couple since they are among closest friend and family a lot of whom they haven’t seen in a while, so it is always fun to capture these moments while allowing ourselves to be creative. Dancing is when everyone lets go of their inhibitions and just enjoys themselves, which is also amazing to be a part of.
5. What makes or breaks a bridal shoot?
We always tell all of our couples to focus on each other as much as possible rather than focusing on the camera during each photo-session. We ask them to interact with each other, make each other laugh, joke around and just be silly, that’s how we capture the real emotions and real smiles. There is nothing better than a genuine moment between a couple and that is always the first thing we look for when photographing someone.
6. What are some of the most photogenic spots for San Francisco engagement shoots?
Marin Headlands, Palace of Fine Arts, Baker Beach and downtown San Francisco are always the popular ones and we love them! However, we also love spots that are often overlooked like the little alleyways in the Mission district, which are always vibrant and full of life as well as other lesser known spots that offer great views of the city, such as Bernal Heights and Potrero Hill.
7. Where else do you love to photograph?
We love to travel and some of our favorite experiences came from shooting weddings overseas or in places we’ve never been before. Over the last few years we were lucky enough to photograph couples in Hong Kong, Prague, Ukraine, Mexico, Italy and all over the US and we always look forward to new adventures wherever they may take us.
8. What’s your favorite photograph you’ve ever taken?
This was a shot that wasn’t meant to be, but we made it work despite of the circumstances. The shot itself took only about 60 seconds from initial idea to implementation. It was pouring rain and the sun had already set, so it was getting dark fast. We set up our lights, brought the couple out, gave them one of our photo umbrellas so that they wouldn’t get completely soaked, took a few shots and quickly brought them back inside. This was the result and this is exactly the reason why we love adventurous couples who trust our vision and let us try things that might or might not work, but often times can result in pretty awesome photos for them to remember their day by.
9. What’s your favorite wedding that you’ve shot?
A destination wedding in Upstate New York. This one literally took several trains, planes, automobiles and two boats just to get to, but was one of the most fun weddings we’ve ever shot all thanks to the amazing couple and the laid back atmosphere they created for their family and guests.
10. What’s your favorite out of all the San Francisco wedding venues shoot at?
We love many venues big and small, but one of our favorites is the Fairmont and their Penthouse suite in particular. The views from up there are spectacular and it’s intimate enough to allow for lots of great moments between the couple and their guests.
11. What is the first thing you ask couples when they approach you?
What photographs are most important to you? While we always take the traditional wedding shots, such as details, family portraits, etc., it is always our goal to tell the story of your wedding through our photographs and tell it in a way that allows the couple to re-live it many years from now while being creative and capturing every moment as beautifully as we can.
12. What’s the biggest mistake the couples make when choosing their photographer?
Not doing enough research on the photographer’s particular style or going for the cheapest available option. Making sure that the photographer’s style and personality aligns with your own is incredibly important. After all, wedding photos are usually all that is left to remember your big day by.
13. What makes RedSphere Studios different from other wedding photographers?
We were never a traditional wedding photography studio. We don’t believe in time limits, we’ll be there for as long as you need us. From getting ready, to family portraits, to the ceremony, to the reception and dancing, we’ll be there capturing every part of your big day without being intrusive or getting in the way of the fun. We also like our photos to tell a story. A story of one of the most special days of your life and we want it to look absolutely stunning while providing you with creative shots no one else will give you, shots that will blow your mind.
14. What tips do you have for couples who have never been photographed before?
Be yourselves. Don’t focus on the photographer or the process of being photographed. We’ll guide you as far as posing, location, etc., but what we are looking for first and foremost is telling the story of you as a couple and what makes you unique. Enjoy each other’s company as you always do and we’ll take care of the rest.
15. Any other general advice for the newly engaged?
Be realistic with your budget and plan for the unexpected. Hiring a good planner is always a great idea and will eliminate a lot of the stress that goes into planning a wedding. Always remember that the whole purpose of all of this is to enjoy it and to spend time with the people you love, so try to approach it as such. Wedding days go by incredibly fast, so make the most of it! Lastly, hire a great photographer to capture it all!
Thanks again to Borrowed & Blue for the Q&A! Be sure to check our their site for all things San Francisco weddings.